Back in 1987, U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., became the first member of Congress to openly identify as gay. On Saturday, Frank made history again: He married partner Jim Ready and became the first congressman to enter into a same-sex marriage.
The two were married in a quiet ceremony on the banks of the Charles River in Newton, Mass. Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick officiated at the wedding, which was attended by such guests as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.; Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.; and Rep. Al Green, D-Texas.
The service was quick, lasting less than five minutes.
Ready, 42, was introduced to Frank, 72, at a fundraiser in 2005. After being friends for two years, they began to date in early 2007. The congressman announced his wedding back in January, but he refused to comment on its details publicly. However, enough details emerged that local media outlets were able to cover the event.
Frank began representing Massachusetts' 4th congressional district in 1981. When Frank came out publicly in 1987, there was speculation the move might hurt his chances of re-election. However, he continued serving in the Congress with no significant threats to his position based on the revelation of his sexual orientation.
Frank went on to have a hand in legislation that brought transparency to the financial market. He plans to retire from office at the end of his latest term in 2013.
His new partner, Jim Ready, runs a small business in Ogunquit, Maine, specializing in custom awnings, carpentry, painting, and other services.
Eric Brown is an IBTimes reporter who eats far too much pizza. He is a graduate of Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, and currently resides in Brooklyn.